Wendy Hassenpflug, owner of Vayu Yoga®, shares tips on how to live life healthier, happier and more completely.
By Wendy Hassenpflug, MS, E-RYT
Would you say that you deal with stress or stress deals with you? How do we know if are dealing with too much stress? By the time we have actually identified that we are ‘stressed out’ we probably missed all the other signs that stress was accumulating.
Stress is a reaction to something that disturbs our physical or mental equilibrium. Our technologically-advanced way of living has made many things easier in our lives, but at the same time, has also taught us to multi-task, and often take on too much.
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Do you often find yourself:
- Drinking more alcohol or smoking more?
- Rushing around but not getting much done?
- Eating to calm down, or even forgetting to eat?
- Having difficulty sleeping?
- Trying to do too many things at once?
These could all be signs that you need to learn how to deal with your stress more effectively. The longer your body is staying in this stressed state, the more at-risk you could become for more long-term health affects. Stress tells us that something is out of balance. There are many ways that stress affects our bodies to show us that we are out of balance, for example:
- Nervous System – goes into fight or flight mode, seeing things as potential threats to fight off
- Musculoskeletal System – our muscles tense up
- Respiratory System – we breathe shallow and quickly
- Cardiovascular System – our heart rate increases
- Endocrine System – under stress the brain creates stress hormones
- Gastrointestinal System – stress can cause under (or over) eating
When we operate in stress-mode for long periods, it affects every aspect of our lives, from our own personal bodies to our marriages and families. Our first goal needs to always be to take care of ourselves. Learning to listen to our bodies’ signs of stress, will help us start to deal with it more effectively. When we get our mind and body aligned, and working together, we can make better choices and treat ourselves with more loving-kindness.
Related: Santa Clarita Vayu Yoga®
A happy and healthy marriage can be a buffer for stress, but an unhappy marriage can become a source of stress. When a couple does not know how to deal with the stressors of their daily lives, then marital stress can actually intensify and exaggerate all the other stressors.
This often leaves couples with little to give to one another. In order to maintain a happy marriage, it’s easy to conclude that the marriage needs to be low-stress, strong, happy, and healthy. In order to do this, couples have to learn how to manage their attitudes and emotions.
Here are some useful tips to help couples manage their stress:
- Develop a healthy relationship with yourself
- Develop healthy communication with one another, learning to listen for understanding and compassion
- Spend more time together alone, go on dates, make time for one another
- Put electronic devices away and give your full attention to one another.
- Talk about your shared future and dreams
- Exercise on a regular basis, on your own, and together
Again, when our physical or mental equilibrium is disturbed, we experience the effects of stress. With constant increase in stress, such problems as depression, insomnia and anxiety can appear. There are many people that suffer from some form of anxiety, which is a natural response to a stressful situation. When stress and anxiety become chronic, it is important to make lifestyle adjustments to properly manage the symptoms.
To truly find our path of healing and health, we have to develop our mind-body connection so that we can listen to our own bodies and tune into our intuition. One of the best ways to begin listening to our bodies is by tuning into our ‘self-talk’, the things that we think about ourselves, our inner voice.
If our self-talk is negative it will have a negative effect on our bodies, likewise, if we can change our patterns to create positive self-talk, we can develop more positive effects on our bodies. If we allow our minds to be caught up in the struggles of our lives then we can miss the beautiful moments that are happening around us.
Acupuncture is an effective way to help the body deal with stress. It works on the principle of stimulating points in the body to correct imbalances in the flow of energy. Acupuncture has had profound effects on the internal organs, recognizing the mind-body connection, as well as emotional-physiological connections. By tapping into the systems of the body that can help us keep stress under control, acupuncture helps normalize hormone levels.
Another effective way to help the body deal with stress is learning how to slow down, breathe more effectively and completely, and by stretching the areas that are tight in our bodies. Restorative Yoga, in particular, helps trigger the relax response, which brings us out of the ‘fight-or-flight’ state of being. In a restorative yoga practice, poses will be held for much longer periods, with the support of bolsters, blankets and props. Students are taught to be in a present state, increase their breath awareness, and learn to relax. This type of practice actually renews and restores energy and helps students to reduce the effects of stress.
Create healthy patterns for your mind, body and spirit and stress will be less of an issue to have to manage. Imagine what it would feel like if you truly appreciated each and every moment of your day. Visualize what it would feel like for you to live each day more vibrantly.
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Vayu Yoga® provides a broad range of specialty instruction that pertain to training the body and mind via floor-based yoga, aerial yoga, YogaWall®, Pilates®, and other related stretching and therapeutic practices. We offer many styles and levels of yoga, including Restorative, Meditation, Gentle, and Therapeutic Yoga.
We provide personalized attention to our students through small group trainings (1-8 students). Vayu Yoga® gives students the tools they need to perform a safe practice for their individual bodies, teaching how to listen to their bodies, and create a strong awareness in their practice.
About Santa Clarita Vayu Yoga® Owner Wendy Hassenpflug
Wendy Hassenpflug is an E-RYT (Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher), through Yoga Alliance, Certified Holistic Nutritionist, Certified Pilates Teacher (Pilates Method Alliance), Certified Personal Trainer (National College of Exercise Professionals). She holds a Master of Science in Kinesiology and a Bachelor of Exercise and Sport Science, and has over 26 years of experience as an educator in secondary and higher education.
Wendy teaches private, duet, and small group trainings at her studio Vayu Yoga®, located at 24353 Main Street Newhall, CA 91321. Visit http://www.vayuyoga.com for more information or to schedule an appointment or book a training.
Wendy hosts “Vibrant Living with Vayu Yoga®” on AM 1220 KHTS radio in Santa Clarita, CA, Tuesdays from 11:00am till Noon. Click here to listen to podcasts.
Source: Santa Clarita News